7 Tips for Running in the Heat
Dry heat in the sunshine or suffocating sultriness under cloudy skies. During the summer months, high temperatures and lots of sun can make training a little more difficult than when temperatures are milder. We have 7 tips for you that will make training easier on hot days, so you don't have to take a forced summer break.
1. Avoid high heat: Early bird or night owl
The heat is particularly intense at lunchtime, and by early evening the streets have become charged with heat. You should avoid running at these times at all costs. In the evening, the high ozone levels make running conditions even more difficult, so you will quickly run out of breath. On days with high temperatures and many hours of sunshine, move your run to the early morning hours and reward yourself with a sunrise or dusk run and enjoy your isotonic drink even more afterwards. If you start the day with a run, you'll start it much more energised than you normally would. When you finish with a workout, you can fall proudly into bed and end the day satisfied.
2. White is the new black
When the temperature is high and the sky is cloudless, you will benefit from light and airy running clothes. Dark clothing attracts the sun and absorbs the heat, while light clothing reflects the sunlight and keeps you cooler for longer. The perfect outfit on such days consists of a loose-fitting T-shirt or sleeveless top and airy tights or shorts. You should also switch to a thin, breathable pair of socks so that your feet don't start to glow.
There's one accessory you shouldn't do without on sunny days: protective headgear. Just as you want to protect your body from losing too much heat through your head in winter, you should protect it from too much sun in summer. Make sure it's a head covering that is suitable for sports and allows good ventilation.
4. Replenish your hydration levels
Even more than usual, make sure you drink enough and increase your liquid intake when temperatures are high. Water, light juice spritzers, unsweetened (cold) teas and isotonic drinks are best.
You can also help yourself by eating certain foods that contain a lot of fluid. These include cucumbers, watermelon, lettuce, tomatoes, courgettes, radishes and peppers. You can increase your fluid intake with healthy snacks or tasty salads. Cold soups, such as gazpacho, will also keep you hydrated.
5. Good protection is half the battle: Sunscreen
Sensitive skin can be damaged after just 30 minutes in the sun. So apply sunscreen before you run, and make sure it's a waterproof alternative, otherwise you run the risk of the cream being washed away by your sweat.
6. Clever routes
In hot weather, shady routes with little tarmac are a good idea. If you have a wooded area nearby, you will find it pleasant as the plants and trees around you will keep the heat out. No heated asphalt radiating heat, but a cool forest floor, shade and fresh, cooler air will make your run in the forest much more pleasant.
7. Reduce the intensity
Adapt the intensity of your training to the heat and how your body feels on these days. Avoid steep inclines, intense interval training or sessions that are challenging for you. Even if you go a little slower than usual in the heat, you will still reach your goal.
Especially in extreme temperatures, it is always important to pay attention to the signals your body is sending you. If you feel tired on a day, are very sensitive to high temperatures or even have circulation problems, don't force yourself to run. Take a break for a day, put your feet up and enjoy an ice cream or a cold drink and give your body the rest it needs so that you can start again later with refuelled energy reserves.
Your VirtualRunners family
In the spirit of the Olympic Games, we conduct the Tokyo Spirit Run on July 25th. Start together with sports friends from all over the world over 3km / 1.9mi, 5 km / 3.1mi, 7.5km / 4.7mi, 10 km / 6.2 mi, 15km / 9.3mi, half marathon or marathon and get your very special Tokyo Spirit medal. Run at any of the three days.